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Why Moms Want Kids to Go Back to School

Dear Kids: I Love You, but Go the F*ck Back to School Already

Dear School-Age Offspring,

We're always so excited at the beginning of Summer, aren't we? Because . . . Summer! Long days and Popsicles and swimming pools and sleepovers! It's going to be awesome.

But even the most awesome things become not-so-awesome if you get too much. Like the way your stomach feels gross when you eat a half-dozen doughnuts in one sitting (not like I'd know from personal experience or anything. Ahem). Anyway, my darlings, the point I'm trying to make is this: as great as Summer is, we've officially reached the threshold of "too much." Which is why I'm gonna need you to go the hell back to school.

It's not that I haven't adored our time together, and I love you more than life itself. But I also love when my life does not involve restocking the fridge like it's my side hustle. I enjoy not having to spend entire days acting as screen time mediator and hearing "It's not faaaaaaiiiir!" when someone gets .00002 seconds longer on the tablet than their sibling. I like knowing that, during the day at least, I will not have to waste my breath responding to ridiculous tattles such as, "My brother is chewing too fast," or constantly play referee when your squabbles turn into knock-down, drag-out fights.

It's nice when the floor and porch and yard and every other surface is not covered with hastily discarded Popsicle wrappers. I'm looking forward to the front door not opening (and slamming, or sometimes not closing at all) 50,000 times per day and not having to yell "THE AIR CONDITIONER IS ON!" until I wonder why I even bother. I can't wait for the blissful peace of not having an endless parade of neighborhood kids in and out and not having to chase the dog when she once again escapes through the door that's open again OMG WHY CAN'T YOU JUST CLOSE THE DOOR THE AIR CONDITIONER IS ON!!!

Also: alone time. I made it through your toddler years, when I couldn't do so much as drop a deuce in the privacy of my own bathroom without hearing commentary and/or questions like, "Why do you have hair down there?" Now that you're older, I relish the moments when it's just me; even grocery shopping is so much more satisfying when I can breeze through my list without being pelted with pestering about wanting this thing or that thing. But in the Summer, I have to make arrangements in order to do anything solo – either ask someone to keep an eye on you or leave you at home for a mad dash somewhere, praying there's not an emergency vehicle on the premises when I return to the house. I mean, I trust you, but kids' brains aren't at peak decision-making condition when they've been marinating in The Amazing World of Gumball all Summer.

I realize that summertime is meant for you to relax and have fun just being kids, and I don't begrudge you the joys of a break from school. But, my loves, I am exhausted. Momming is hard any time of year, and Summer-Momming is like somebody said to me, "OK, you can sleep in a little bit . . . but you have to do twice the work in exchange." I can tell the break is wearing on you, too (even though you'd never admit it), judging by the way you loudly bemoan "boredom" every 15 minutes despite the plethora of activity choices you actually have.

So, sweethearts, it's high time for you to go back to school. I love you enough to care deeply about your education and wouldn't want you to miss a single, mind-enriching moment (. . . yeah, that's it). And I promise that even though I'm anxious for you to go, I will miss you while you're gone.

But I'll get over it.


PS - Don't let the door hit you on the way out. Oh, who am I kidding? You're going to leave it open. The air conditioner is still on.

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